Reviewed By: Harriet Klausner
The Honorable Phryne Fisher accompanies Charles Freeman to Green Mill, a dance hall that was very popular in Australia in the 1920’s. She promised his mother that she would look after her son when one of the participants in a dance hall is knifed to death. He was behind Phryne who didn’t see the actual stabbing but when her escort sees the bloody body, he gets sick and runs into the men’s room. By the time the police arrive on the scene, Charles has disappeared.
His mother, a cruel and hateful virago, asks Phryne, who moonlights as a private detective, to find him. She discovers Charles is gay and possesses pictures that could get him killed since at that time and place sodomy was against the law. When she finally finds Charles she hands him over to the police even though she doesn’t think he is the killer. She also has to make a trip to the outback to find Victor, the brother who Charles believes is dead because his mother told him so. Mrs. Freeman wishes Victor was dead so she would inherit the house and money as her late husband left her with nothing. Phryne finds a confrontation between the two brothers is inevitable.
THE GREEN MILL MURDER is so much more than a murder mystery, it is a journey into the heart of a family, a trip into the new musical world of jazz and it is the story of a woman who lives her life her way regardless what society thinks. 1920s Australia comes to glorious life in Kerry Greenwood’s capable hands, but though the mystery is superb, the locale vivid, and the era descriptive, readers will continue reading this series because the heroine is such a fascinating character.
Reprinted with permission. Do Not repost without permission from the author, Harriet Klausner